Back in 2013 the main weather event that captivated the US press was Hurricane Sandy, a storm that smashed into the East Coast of the United States severely impacting people in Florida all the way up to New York. Indeed New York was one of the worst states hit as the storm surge hit Staten Island and resulted in hundreds of thousands of people in the North East without power and many were forced to flee. The narrative of this storm is that the United States pulled together in this time of crisis, as personified by Governor Chris Christie hugging President Obama after the storm hit New Jersey, but this is not the case. Some Republican senators instead opted for political point scoring and now their hypocrisy needs to be called out.
It is widely known that United States government is unapologetically pro-Israel and this has normally resulted in the favourable press coverage of the right-wing government of Israeli, even in supposedly liberal publications. However this has gone one step further. Senator Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) has introduced Senate Bill 720, also known as the Israel Anti-Boycott Bill, and already the bill has 45 cosponsors- 31 Republican and 14 Democrat. Not only is this an attempt by the pro-Israel lobby to continue comparing opposition to the Israeli government as the same as anti-Semitism, but this bill shows that many members of the Senate do not understand the US constitution.
One of the main issues that the Republicans campaigned on in the 2016 election, both at the national and the state level, was the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Speaker Ryan recently announced what the Republicans in the House will seek to replace Obamacare with and it was Draconian to say the least. Many expected that Republicans in the Senate who had taken more moderate positions on healthcare reform like Susan Collins (R-MA) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) would mean that the Senate bill would be less extreme. In a remarkable turn of events the Senate bill is even more harsh on the poor and provides a massive handout to the wealthiest individuals in America. But thankfully the Senate bill has hit a snag.
One of the few things that Donald Trump has been able to do as US President is unravel many of the environmental protection measures enacted by the Obama Administration. This is profoundly important as the United States is one of the biggest polluters in the world and therefore any attempt to genuinely tackle climate change would need the support of the US government. The nature of this problem requires countries across the world collaborating, and if the US chooses to neglect its duty to the rest of the globe it falls to we the people.
One of the first things that Donald Trump did after being inaugurated as US President was sign an Executive Order banning the migration of people from seven Muslim-majority countries, namely Syria, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia, and Libya. As well as revealing a massive conflict of interest between Trump’s business interests and US foreign policy, the ban violated the US Constitution. However, it’s not just me who is saying it. A federal judge in Seattle has issued a nation-wide halt on the ban, deeming the measure unconstitutional, and this move will provide temporary relief for people across the world. The political optics of this situation are important to recognise and celebrate so people can successfully resist Trump’s agenda.
In a move that could be in the running for the stupidest decision ever made by a group of people anywhere, House Republicans have voted in favour of allowing people who are certifiably insane to have access to guns. Lawmakers were debating whether or not to strike down a rule from the Obama administration that actively tried to prevent people with certain mental illnesses from having access to firearms. Citing a desire to increase gun ownership under President Trump, the House voted 235-180 in favour of getting rid of the rule.
The campaign, the election, and the anticipation is over. Donald Trump is now the 45th President of the United States. In front of the eyes of the world, the New York businessman took his place as the most powerful individual on the planet, but the main focus of the press will be upon his inaugural address. These speeches tend to be light on actual policy substance because there is plenty of time for such discussions later. As such, the tone of an inaugural address is supposed to be an indication of how the President will govern in the next four years rather than a detailed programme for governing. Trump’s, however, was a depressing look into America’s future.